December 19, 2007

I'll Pay Extra

Catherine and I were walking down the streets of Westwood a few months ago on our way to see a play. We crossed an intersection, only to be confronted by one of those 40-something, usually Latino gentlemen distributing flyers.

If you've been to Times Square or anywhere on the strip of Las Vegas, you've probably seen these guys flipping the flyers in front of your face. Most often the flyer gives you a few dollars discount on entry fees to a gentleman's club, so you can spend the rest of your savings having some woman you'll never get to touch pretend that she really wants you to touch her. She's lying - she's only there to take your money.

If not for a gentlemen's club discount, the flyer will probably promote the big annual blowout sale of some random, struggling electronics, jewelry or cheezy clothing store that seems to have an annual blowout sale on a weekly basis.

Walking up Westwood Boulevard, as Catherine and I had been doing during the time of said flyer distribution, I figured the flyer was definitely not for a strip club. And since I had no need for cheezy looking faux-silk shirts, I didn't make eye contact with senior flyer guy and cast my eyes toward the sidewalk as I pushed Catherine forward.

Flyer distribution guys, however, have one simple goal and that's to hand out flyers. It's their job. In fact, the entire job description probably only has three words: hand out flyers.

They're not looking for people to come ask them for flyers. It's not self-service flyering. They push forward and hand the darn things out to anybody and everybody they can. So, despite the fact that I tried my best to ignore this gentleman, he popped in our direction and pushed a flyer in front of our chests.

Discount sushi, he said. 50% off sushi.

As if the unwelcome flyering wasn't enough....sushi? You serious?

I looked at Catherine. Sushi?

Let me tell you, I told her, if a sushi restaurant is struggling on such hard times that they need to resort to having Mexican men standing on corners handing out flyers, I'm not real sure I want to be eating their fish in the first place.

This line of conversation quickly spiraled into a stimulating discussion among Catherine and I that has been going on for about 3 months so far. And now is the time to let you join in. So let me present to you:

A List Of Things For Which I Really Don't Want To Pay A Discounted Price. Full Price Is Fine, Thank You. In Fact, Charge Me More Than Full Price, I'll Pay Extra.

1. SUSHI: Show me a place that offers 50% off sushi prices and I'll show you a doctor's prescription to cure tape worm.

2. AIRLINE PILOT SALARIES: I never - ever - want to hear that an airline pilot's salary has been decreased. They want more money than Trump? Fine. Here, take my credit cards, go crazy. Just get me back on the goddam ground.

3. CAR BRAKES: Discount car brakes at a discount auto shop? Does that come with a discount tombstone?

4. SURGEON: Heart surgeon, brain surgeon, even pancreas surgeon for that matter, if somebody's gonna dig around my insides with sharp objects, I don't want it to be the guy that spent his medical school years smoking so much reefer that he's resorted to advertising his services with words like, "the cheapest liver transplant in town" or "free sandwich with each procedure."

5. SAFETY AIR BAGS: If this balloon is the one thing separating me from walking away from a car wreck and being wheeled away, make the damn things out of golden parachutes if you have to.

That's what I've got so far.... you?


Catherine said...

after my tumble last saturday, i'm adding cut-rate bicycle helmets to the list!

Alison said...

A friend claims to have seen a sign advertising "Al's Discount Bungie Jumping". Definitely not a business I'd want to patronize.

Andra Sue said...

I couldn't agree with you more, especially on #2. Oh, wait, maybe that's because my husband is a pilot! Hee! In any case, they get paid way less than you'd imagine. Did you know flight instructors typically make less than minimum wage? And that regional airline first officers start start flying jets at around $18k/year? And I hear that they keep relaxing the requirements on experience instead of increasing pay to combat the turnover. It's pathetic.

I really don't like to fly anyone commercial except Southwest anymore. *Shudder*

Trihardist said...

Mine are more pedestrian, with toilet paper being right at the top of the list.